Tibetan Wonders

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Journey through the diverse landscapes of Yunnan Province up to ‘the roof of the world’ where you will experience the many wonders of Tibet. Admire ancient monasteries and Himalayan vistas before taking in the ultimate view of Everest.

Please note: This page shows the 2017 Itinerary. To see the itinerary for tours departing in 2016, please Click Here.

Places Visited

Australia - Kunming (2N) - Dali (2N) - Lijiang (2N) - Zhongdian (3N) - Lhasa (3N) - Shigatse (1N) - New Tingri (1N) - Mt Everest (1N) - Old Tingri (1N) - Rongbuk (1N) - Shigatse (1N) - Gyantse (1N) - Tsedang (1N) - Lhasa (1N) - Chengdu (1N) - Australia

Days 1-2: Fly to Kunming
Fly overnight with Cathay Pacific Airways to the relaxed city of Kunming, ‘the city of Eternal Spring’. (D) Brisbane passengers may depart on Day 2. Adelaide passengers may depart one day earlier.
Days 1-2: Fly to Kunming
Day 3: Discover the Stone Forest
Meander through the formations of the UNESCO listed Stone Forest, where towering limestone pillars stand tree-like in a fascinating illusion of petrified woodland. This afternoon visit Dianchi Lake and the Western Hills, often referred to as ‘Sleeping Beauty Hills’. (B,L,D)
Day 3: Discover the Stone Forest
Days 4: Ethnic Xizhou Village
Drive to Dali and then onto Xizhou located onthe shores of Lake Erhai. Take part in a traditional Bao Minority Tea Ceremony accompanied by costumed dancers and see the ancient dwelling houses. This evening, there’s free time to wander around the fascinating old quarter and lively market. (B,L)
Days 4: Ethnic Xizhou Village
Day 5: Mountain Meditation
Mt Weibao is one of the Taoist religion’s most sacred mountains, and has twenty temples dotted on its forested slopes. Take a scenic walk and discover a handful of these temples, stopping at Qingxia temple where you will be met by a Taoist priest who will introduce you to Taoist meditation techniques. This afternoon, cruise on pretty Erhai Lake and visit a tie-dying workshop. (B,L)
Day 5: Mountain Meditation
Day 6: Shaxi Ancient Town
Drive to Shaxi Ancient Town, nestled deep in the Himalayan foothills. Learn about the fascinating minority peoples who reside in the area and enjoy a local lunch. Continue to Lijiang and spend the evening wandering the street food stalls. (B,L)
Day 6: Shaxi Ancient Town
Day 7: Jade Dragon Snow Mountain & Dongba Shaman
The magnificent Jade Dragon Snow Mountain soars to 5,500m. Taking a chairlift, explore one of the gorgeous high meadows and enjoy the amazing vistas. Admire the fascinating Ming Dynasty frescoes at Baisha and see the intricate creations of the embroidery school. Next, meet a genuine Shaman who will teach you to write the forgotten language of Dongba Pictograms. (B,L,D)
Day 7: Jade Dragon Snow Mountain & Dongba Shaman
Day 8: Tiger Leaping Gorge
Over 3,000m deep, Tiger Leaping Gorge, with its backdrop of snow-capped mountains, is one of China’s most extraordinary sights. Continue on to the Tibetan monastery town of Zhongdian, also known as Shangri-La. (B,L,D)
Day 8: Tiger Leaping Gorge
Day 9: Napahai Grasslands
Visit Songzanlin Monastery before walking through the Napahai Grasslands. (B,L,D)
Day 10: Fly to Lhasa
Fly to Lhasa, the heart and soul of Tibet. The afternoon is free to relax and acclimatise to the altitude. (B,L,D)
Day 10: Fly to Lhasa
Day 11: Jokhang Temple and Spiritual Barkhor
Lhasa is a quickly growing modern city but among the narrow, old streets you’ll feel a million miles from the stresses and strains of the modern world. Wander around the Barkhor to see traditionally dressed locals, stalls of religious trinkets and prostrating pilgrims. Inside the Jokhang Temple, the devotion is palpable as queues of people worship in the flickering light of yak butter candles. There will also be a visit to Sera Monastery, to witness the debating monks. (B,L,D)
Day 11: Jokhang Temple and Spiritual Barkhor
Day 13: Potala Palace
The Potala Palace is an architectural wonder towering over the city from its seat on Marpo Ri (Red Mountain). The Potala, the winter palace of the Dalai Lama, houses thousands of rooms filled with old treasures from intricate shrines to beautiful frescoes. This afternoon, explore Norbulingka, the summer residence of the Dalai Lama, set in parkland just outside the city, before visiting a local Tibetan arts and crafts shop. Enjoy a traditional Tibetan dinner and a dance performance in the evening. (B,L,D)
Day 13: Potala Palace
Days 14-15: Shigatse
Travel across Tibet’s stark plains to Shigatse. Dominated by a fort reminiscent of the Potala, Shigatse is Tibet’s second largest city and the traditional home of the Panchen Lama. The rest of the day is spent exploring. (B,L,D) The next day continue by road to New Tingri admiring the awe-inspiring views of the mighty Himalayas as we go. (B,L,D)
Days 14-15: Shigatse
Day 16: Everest Base Camp
Traverse some of the world’s most incredible scenery stopping en route at the world's highest post office, as we make our way to base camp (weather permitting). Here, situated under the gaze of Everest’s north face, the views of the world’s highest peak are unsurpassed. Visit Rongbuk Monastery, draped in colourful prayer flags, and stay overnight in the township. (B,L,D)
Day 16: Everest Base Camp
Day 17: Rongbuk to Shigatse
Witness the sunrise over Mt Everest before driving back to Shigatse, passing Tso La Pass and Gyatso La Pass on the way. This evening join the pilgrims on their evening ‘Kora’ (circumnavigation) of the monastery. (B,L,D)
Day 17: Rongbuk to Shigatse
Day 18: Shigatse to Gyantse
Visit Tashilhunpo Monastery, Tibet’s second largest monastery, then continue to the pleasant town of Gyantse to visit Pelkor Monastery and the Gyantse Kumbum. Visit a traditional folk house for some home brewed ‘chang’. (B,L,D)
Day 18: Shigatse to Gyantse
Day 19-20: Tsedang and Yumbulhakang Palace
Travel along the Brahmaputra River to Tsedang. Visit Gangpo Ri. (B,L,D) The next day, visit Yumbulhakang Palace. Continue to the Chang Chun Monastery and the King’s Tombs en route to Lhasa. (B,L)
Day 19-20: Tsedang and Yumbulhakang Palace
Day 21-22: Chengdu and the Giant Pandas
Fly to Chengdu. (B) Tomorrow, visit Chengdu’s Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. In the evening, sample Sichuan cuisine. (B,L,D)
Day 21-22: Chengdu and the Giant Pandas
Day 23: Depart Chengdu
The morning is at leisure before boarding the overnight flight to Australia. (B) Due to flight schedules, Brisbane and Perth passengers may arrive home on Day 23.
Day 23: Depart Chengdu
Day 24: Arrive Australia
Arrive home today.

Tour prices are per person, twin share

2016

2017

Additional Price Information:

Single Hotel Room Option from $1,530
Land Only (Kunming to Chengdu) 22 days from $6,280 per person (includes tipping)
Adelaide passengers may require a stopover in Hong Kong at an additional cost
Darwin passengers may require a stopover in Singapore at an additional cost
16 Sep 17 departure coincides with Golden Week celebrations and sightseeing may be affected.
Above prices include airline fuel surcharge and tipping. Subject to change
Tour availability is updated each Monday. While every effort is made to ensure availability status is current, it is advisable to contact our reservations department on 1300 318 203. Limited seats denotes 4 seats or less available.

A visa is required by all nationalities. A single entry visa should be arranged in advance of travel. Unlike many other tour operators, we include your entry visa in the price of our tour for Australian passport holders. We handle the entire visa process – all you need to do is fill out the form and send your passport to us. We are always on hand to help you with any questions or queries you might have when completing the form. 

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. It’s a good idea to check call costs with hotel staff or your local guide before making calls, as this can be expensive. A service charge may also be involved. To call Australia – the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 61, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number. .
 
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are quite popular in Asia and you will find high quality coverage. Asia has active roaming agreements with most of the service providers. Please make sure you are aware of associated costs and have activated your international roaming prior to departure.
 
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have wifi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and China is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount (in US Dollars) to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size and services used during the trip.
 
For independent passengers, or group passengers with pre/post tour arrangements, you should allow USD5-10 per person per day.
 
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure, and China has a vast array of shopping opportunities for those who love to seek out a bargain. From hand carved jade to local silk products or pearls from the South China Sea – the variety and choice can seem endless.
 
In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
 
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

Included meals detailed in the itinerary.

Breakfast is served in the hotel and usually includes western dishes. As is traditional in China, lunch and dinner consists of small dishes of local cuisine which is then placed on a ‘Lazy Susan’ so you can experience the variety of speciality dishes. In China all the dishes are served in various styles and brought out to the table for everyone to share. The amount served is more than ample for the whole group. We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or unusual in taste.
 
Each individual place setting will consist of a bowl of fan (rice), a pair of chopsticks (you may request western cutlery if you prefer), a flat bottomed soup spoon and a saucer. Chinese food is usually served in courses where a typical meal will consist of rice, one to four meat or fish dishes, two vegetable dishes, and one soup dish. Almost all food is cut into bite sized pieces. The centre of the meal is the fan or rice. The meats and vegetables that we think of as the focus of the meal are known as ts’ai, which roughly translates as ‘side dishes’. Fish is not always available, particularly outside of the bigger cities.
 
The Chinese are also not big on desserts with meals normally complemented with fruit to clean and refresh the palate.
 
Sichuan cuisine is distinguished by its use of ginger, chilli and the ‘Sichuan peppercorn’ called the fagara. Each meal will usually have some mild dishes but many of the local speciality dishes will be hot. If your group find there are not enough mild dishes served, please inform your National Escort/Local Guide so that they may resolve the problem for the next meal.
 
If you would like to drink beer, soft drink or bottled water with your meals, payment is to be made directly to the restaurant staff. Beer is traditionally consumed in small glasses; not the larger pints glasses that you may be used to.
 
Green tea is sometimes provided complimentary. All other drinks will be at your own expense.
If you have booked a tour that does not include all meals, your local guides will be able to recommend a variety of restaurants to meet your taste and budget.
 
It is possible to buy snacks in supermarkets within major towns or cities. Alternatively, you may also like to bring comforts like cereal, biscuits, muesli bars, and tea/coffee from home.
 
Any food/diet requests MUST be specified at the time of booking and you should mention it again to the National Escort/ Local Guides when you meet them – they will do their utmost to cater for any special requests, such as vegetarian meals or food to be avoided in case of allergies.

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Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 1300 318 203 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.


Why Book This Tour?

This tour is ideal for those with an extensive period of time who wish for a comprehensive visit Yunnan Province and Tibet. This tour visits the main destinations and sights of these two areas. This is an active tour with scenic driving, long periods of walking and high altitudes – remember, Tibet is known as ‘the roof of the world’

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